Kit Siang, meter gauge is enough for the time being.

Kit Siang's Blog Screenshot
Kit Siang’s Blog Screenshot

Kit Siang’s attitude (via a post published on his official blog) towards Malaysian Electrified Double Tracking Project (EDTP) is skeptical. According to the post, it is not justifiable to spend about RM 9 billion on the project simply because our trains run on meter gauge rails and cannot move as fast as the ones on standard gauge rails.

His argument on inability of trains to move fast along meter gauge is flawed. He might forget about the terrain nature of Malaysia which prohibits the usage of standard gauge rails, especially around hilly areas. He might also overlooked the fact that turning the whole inter-city railroad service from narrow gauge to standard gauge is extremely expensive, especially this will also include the exorbitant cost of modifying, if not replacing our current narrow-gauge rolling stock.

He might also forget the fact that our trains also run through the border to Thailand, which also uses meter gauge. Changing to standard gauge will adversely affect our freight services, which accounts a significant portion of revenue to our national railway company, Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB) [2]. Of note, meter gauge has been here for a long time and it is a de facto standard for Southeast Asia railway network. Decision to change our railroad system (which is currently connected to neighboring countries) cannot be made single-handedly. Easier said than done.

The standard-gauge-run Acela Express, the only high-speed train service in the United States has an awesome top speed, which stands at 240 km/h. However, its average speed is only at 110 km/h due to local regulations in some stretches of its route and also due to geographical and infrastructure limitations. High speed trains are possible if the railroads are made away from general population due to high noise produced. Given our current layout, which often crosses cities and villages, it is not feasible to have such a high speed rail network as an alternative to EDTP.

Malaysia is paving its way towards better railroad service. With the introduction of double-tracked railway between Ipoh and Kuala Lumpur, a new KTM service called ETS (Electric Train Services) was introduced, offering a premium service with comfy fleet of trains with various amenities. The service might not be as perfect as the ones offered in some other countries but we need to be aware that we are paving our way towards betterment. ETS has top speed of 140 km/h and offers only two-hour journey between Kuala Lumpur and Ipoh (non-stop). This is actually faster than cars (did I mention it is safer?).

Let us not forget that we HAVE ALREADY BEEN USING STANDARD GAUGE in our newer rail systems, such as LRT (both Ampang and Kelana Jaya Line) and KLIA Ekspres. The reason why we stick to meter gauge for inter-city rail system is due to the integration of our freight and passenger services to neighboring countries. Therefore, we can see that the current administration is able to realize the benefits of having standard gauge railways for speed and stability.

The EDTP project might have its flaws but by simply complaining without even care to seek solution is worse. Reading their comments about. This is most probably not written by Kit Siang but I write this response because the post resembles his viewpoint, unless he states otherwise. The current government is not perfect at all but that does not indicate everything they are doing is wrong. Consider doing some homework before complaining (and not giving specific solutions).

 

Footnotes

  1. Inter-city rail service in Malaysia uses 1-meter long narrow gauge while most other parts in the world
  2. KTM Berhad depends a lot on freight services to ensure its sustainability in business. KTM Intercity service is best known for their extremely cheap rates. This does not simply happen because KTM is generous. It is a company. It spends money on maintaining trains and stations and it needs every cent of them, be it from government’s initiative or fare collection from its users. Since the fare system barely gives them profit, they need KTM Freight to survive.

KL Sentral is failing?

KTM Komuter Platform Area (KL Sentral)
KTM Komuter Platform Area (KL Sentral)

KL Sentral was developed to be the iconic intermodal transportation hub for Kuala Lumpur. The early phase of its mega-scale development stage is the KL Sentral station itself. The 700 ft x 515 ft station that opens in 2001 is now facing some of the problems that become a nuisance for commuters and tourists.

One of the problems highlighted is the abundance of stalls selling small items such as souvenirs and headscarves. As long as the stalls are carefully placed around the station that should not be a huge problem. Small stalls can also be seen around other transport hubs such as Port Authority Bus Terminal and Grand Central Station, both located in Manhattan, New York City, United States.

Another problem highlighted is the poor integration of bus system with the station, resulting in inefficient usage and confusion among travelers. As said in my previous article, in order to build a transport hub, we need to have a robust plan, make it future proof and have excellent integration across services.

In general, KL Sentral has already been doing its job greatly as rail transport hub. However, it needs to improve on its way of handing bus and taxi service.

Read more here:

  1. [The Star] – Traffic consultants highlight KL Sentral’s failure as the bus hub for Klang Valley
  2. [The Star] – Commuters have difficulty navigating KL Sentral’s haphazard layout

KTM Komuter Planned Maintenance Schedule 22 Dec 2012 to 10 Mar 2013

KTM Berhad Logo
KTM Berhad Logo

What happened: Service delay between KTM Komuter Putra and Kuala Lumpur station.

Why: Track maintenance work between KTM Komuter Putra and Kuala Lumpur station.

When: Refer train schedule below.

To accommodate the service interruption for this sector, a shuttle bus service plying Sentul – Kuala Lumpur – Sentul is available for KTM Komuter passengers. Shuttle buses will pick up and drop off the passenger at the entrance of the stations involved.

Note: KTM Komuter services for Rawang – Sungai Gadut will be operating as usual.

NO.

DATE

NO.

DATE

22 .12.2012

9.

16.02.2013

23.12.2012

10.

17.02.2013

29.12.2012

11.

23.02. 2013

30.12.2012

12.

02.03.2013

05.01.2013

13.

03.03.2013

06.01.2013

14.

09.03. 2013

02.02.2013

15.

10.03.2013

03.02.2013

For further information, kindly contact KTM Berhad Call Centre at 1-300-8-5862.

KTM Komuter 1Malaysia Discount Card Application Form

KTM Komuter 1Malaysia Discount Card Application Form
KTM Komuter 1Malaysia Discount Card Application Form

Dear readers,

You can begin your application via a downloadable PDF form here.

Please note that KTM Komuter 1Malaysia discount card is only available if you meet the following conditions:

  • Malaysian citizen
  • Monthly salary is below RM 3000

The downloadable PDF form for KTM Komuter 1Malaysia discount card can be obtained here.

Source: KTMB Official website

[LDSN News] LANDASAN QuickAccess: One table, plethora of information

LDSN QuickAccess
LDSN QuickAccess

Introducing our new feature, LANDASAN QuickAccess! It enables you to reach LANDASAN’s popular pages faster and also displays schedule and fares.

We believe that our visitors, especially tourists, can make full use of this feature.

We have also updated most of RapidKL service and reduced dependency on external links. We did some cleanup on the articles as well to improve your reading experience.

As for KLIA Ekspres and KLIA Transit, we will improve the accessibility of the two services in the future. We would also apply this update to LANDASAN [ms] within the next few weeks.

We are travelers too, and we look forward to provide the best information to our customers.

 

Regards,

LANDASAN

KTMB New Website

[November 13th 2012] KTM Berhad has changed their website design quite a number of times this year. Access time has improved throughout the years but it is still not as user friendly as some other transport service websites.

Six yellow boxes link to the most commonly visited link in the website. This is a nice addition with the new version.

Of another note, if you need a guide on using KTMB e-Ticket, visit this page for more information.

KTMB E-Ticket Booking Guide

First and foremost, log on to KTMB e-Ticket website (https://intranet.ktmb.com.my/e-ticket/login.aspx). Then proceed with the steps below.

1. When you open KTMB E-Ticket website, you will see the above screenshot.

(Click more to see the complete guide)

Continue reading “KTMB E-Ticket Booking Guide”

KTM Intercity Timetable – effective August 1st 2010

UPDATE: Untuk jadual terkini KTM Intercity (KTM Antarabandar), sila klik sini.

Bermula 1 Ogos 2010, perkhidmatan tren antarabandar KTM akan dijadualkan semula. Sektor yang terlibat ialah sektor Timur, Utara dan juga Selatan.

Untuk maklumat lanjut, sila klik di sini untuk fail PDF berkenaan dan juga sini untuk maklumat lanjut berkenaan KTM Antarabandar di LANDASAN.

Bermula pada tarikh tersebut juga, tren KTM tidak lagi akan berhenti di Stesen Kuala Lumpur (KLO – KL Old Railway Station) dan penjualan tiket di sana akan diberhentikan.

SR21 – Ekspres Langkawi: Hat Yai ke KL Sentral

  1. Hat Yai 1700 hrs
  2. Padang Besar
  3. Arau – 1900 hrs
  4. Alor Setar
  5. Sungai Petani
  6. Bukit Mertajam
  7. Taiping
  8. Ipoh
  9. Tanjung Malim
  10. Rawang
  11. KL Sentral – 0536 hrs (+1 day)

*the schedule is still incomplete, pending further information.

OCTOBER 14th UPDATE: Please refer to KTM Intercity Schedules page for more information.